I tried hard to look on the positive side before the launch by trusting Apple’s sense of what makes a good wearable, and also my experience with other square watches like the Tag Heuer Monaco, the Casio G-Shock GW-B5600, and the Bell & Ross BR-03. All these have sharper edges and flatter sides than you find on a round watch, yet still manage to sit comfortably on my wrist, but there’s no doubt in my mind that these aren’t for everyone. A smartwatch needs to have a far friendlier fit.
Obviously, we now know the flat-sided design isn’t part of the Apple Watch Series 7. Instead, Apple has subtly altered the look of the Watch with a larger screen and more curves, plus a tiny increase in case size. Look at the photos of the Series 7 and you can see the side profile shape is very similar to the Series 6, indicating it should wear in exactly the same way, although Apple hasn’t released case dimensions or weight for these new versions to do a direct comparison yet.
Redesigns keep products fresh, but the Apple Watch Series 6, like all the previous models, is expertly judged when it comes to shape, making it easy to wear all day long without fatigue. It doesn’t get annoying, it doesn’t get sweaty or itchy, and it’s lightweight and slim enough to wear under a shirt cuff or overnight. Apple didn’t stumble on this by accident. It took extensive research and development, plus the design expertise of Sir Jony Ive, to come up with the Apple Watch as we know it.
You may be wondering why this matters, especially if you’re looking at your first smartwatch. To understand, we need to explore the best features, mostly related to health and fitness, on the Apple Watch. The Series 7 can recognize if you fall over when working out or off your bike when cycling, and there’s fall detection in normal use. too. The sensor array enables respiratory rate monitoring at night, and includes irregular heart rate alerts throughout the day, background blood oxygen level readings, and the usual encouragement to close the Activity rings and to check if you’ve washed your hands for 20 seconds or not.
The moment you stop wearing a smartwatch, it becomes completely useless.
Apple’s health and fitness features are comprehensive, easy to use, and reliable, but they only make a difference to your life if you’re wearing the Watch. It’s not going to know if you take a tumble from your bike if it’s still on the charger at home, is it? The first step to wearing the Apple Watch, or any smartwatch, each day and getting all the benefits is for it to be comfortable. The moment you stop wearing a smartwatch, it becomes completely useless.
Apple knows this, hence any design-related decision it makes is unlikely to creep into “brave” territory. The only changes we’re likely to see are ones made to encourage long-term use. This is why I’m glad the rumored design changes were wrong. The Apple Watch succeeds because you can wear it and forget about it until it’s actually needed. It’s a vital aspect of us being able to recommend a smartwatch to you, and at first glance here, that looks set to continue with the Series 7.
- The Apple Watch Series 7 rumors were wrong and I’m glad
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